Prime News, National (New Delhi), November 17:- Putting an end to an over three-month-old battle between the two warring factions of the Janata Dal United (JD-U), the Election Commission of India (EC) on Friday granted the “Arrow” symbol to the Nitish Kumar faction.
As the victor group welcomed the poll panel’s decision and urged the “strayed section of leaders” to join back the party under Nitish Kumar’s leadership, the rival Sharad Yadav faction declared that the battle would not end here.
The EC’s decision may have ramifications over the disqualification case against party’s rebel Rajya Sabha MPs Sharad Yadav and Ali Anwer Ansari, which is being heard by Rajya Sabha Chairman M. Venkaiah Naidu.
In its order, the poll panel said: “The respondent group led by Nitish Kumar has demonstrated overwhelming majority support in the legislature wing as well as majority in the National Council of the party, which is the apex-level organisational body of the party.
“Accordingly, the group led by Nitish Kumar is hereby recognised as the Janata Dal-United in terms of Paragraph 15 of the symbols order.”
“Consequently, the group led by Nitish Kumar is entitled to use the reserved symbol ‘Arrow’ of the party as a recognised state party in Bihar,” it added.
Sharad Yadav, a former President of the JD-U, had broken away from Chief Minister and JD-U President Nitish Kumar after the latter joined the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) in July-August this year.
The Election Commission referred to the Supreme Court’s verdict in the Sadiq Ali vs Election Commission of India (AIR 1972 SC 187) case wherein the apex court upheld the principle of test of majority support in the organisational and legislative wings.
The Sharad Yadav faction had contended that the election of the 195 National Council members done in October 2016 and submitted to the EC on November 10, 2016 was not valid as the party’s constitution was not adhered to in the process.
It submitted that the Commission should look into the numerical strength of the National Council of the party constituted in 2013. (MR, Inputs: Agencies).